The Competitive Case of Pathao

The Competitive Case of Pathao

The regional ride-sharing markets are propelling owing to a variety of reasons. One company that is rising amid these mobility trends is Pathao. Making its way to the Bangladeshi ride-hailing market, Pathao was founded back in 2015. However, it made its way officially in September 2018 in Kathmandu. The company has its headquarters in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The company has a Bengali origin which means ‘send’.

Here are the major Bangladeshi cities in which Pathao functions:

  • Sylhet
  • Chittagong
  • Dhaka
  • Khulna
  • Kathmandu

It functions in the form of an on-demand digital platform that aims to cater to various customers’ requirements apart from taxi services only. Hussain M. Elius’s brainchild entered the market in the form of a delivery startup catering to the rising needs of retailers taking the online way. Shifat Adnan and Fahim Saleh co-founded the company.

But, who knew that the flocking roads of Dhaka were on the way to witnessing an app that could help people with their transportation needs too.

Pathao lends other services like food delivery, courier, and e-commerce, besides ride-hailing. Hence, it is called Bangladesh’s ‘two-wheeler’ Uber for all the right reasons.

Let’s explore more about it over here.

Business Model

Pathao offers both the B2B and B2C business models.

●     Business Model 1

The B2B model helps other online businesses and organizations by offering logistic services to businesses and hence, help the services reach the ultimate audience.

●     Business Model 2

The B2C business model of Pathao acts as a service provider for the target audience in the regions where it functions. The customers can opt for any services offered like Pathao rides, Pathao delivery, and Pathao courier services.

Revenue Model

  • Pathao focuses on opting for a fast response to customer demands. It aces the expectation, which draws the way for its domination in Bangladesh. The delivery services for the customers are chargeable. For instance, the base fare for the deliveries is Tk 50. Pathao charges Tk 20 per kilometer, and further, the customer is charged Tk 2.5 per minute as the waiting charge.
  • For food delivery, Pathao has different rates for deliveries in different areas. Also, the rate changes based on the quantity. The rates are as follows:
RegionTime0-500 grams500 grams – 1 kg1 kg – 2 kg
Dhaka ( add : 1% COD charge on the deliverable product)24 hours of standard deliveries.607090
Chittagong24 hours (Dhaka to Chittagong)607090
Rajshahi24 hours (Rajshahi to Rajshahi)607090
Sylhet ( add : 1% COD charge on the deliverable product)24 hours (Sylhet to Sylhet)607090
NationwideConditional nationwide run130150180

Source: Researchgate.net

Features

In 2021, Pathao touched the peak in terms of its revenue, which amounted to USD 14 million. Research on the company’s employee format suggests that the company was home to 1,200 employees, and the revenue per employee stood at $11,666. This market valuation can be attributed to a reliable degree of features offered by the Pathao mobile app. Some of them are as follows:

●    Variety in Services

One of the main reasons Pathao is becoming a sure-shot winner in the Bangladeshi market is its variety of services. Entering the market act as an excellent solution to drop the traffic congestion; it did not stop there itself. Realizing the variety in the needs of people, Pathao touched the following markets:

  • Courier services
  • Food delivery services
  • On-demand services
  • Bike services

●    Targeting An Excellent User Experience

Pathao’s reliable and straightforward user interface renders convenience to a more extensive audience base. The signing up process is streamlined, and there are hardly any issues when signing up for the app functions. The interface covers some of the following benefits.

  • No forced app closing or unnecessary lags while using the app.
  • GPS offers accuracy and constant updates to enhance customer engagement.
  • The short process to sign-up does not cause much of a concern.

●    Promotion Ways

Promotion is the key to converting your ride-hailing service leads into an organic audience. Pathao enjoys a competitive edge when it comes to promotions. It opts for the following promotional measures.

–      Discounts And Offers

Pathao welcomes you to its strong family by giving you an off of Rs. 50. It is not one but 10 discounts that every new user gets. Recommendations and referrals help users enjoy more discounts. However, as the Pathao business app gained momentum, the discount numbers were reduced. Since its launch in 218, it has offered massive discounts, and even the focused audience of the competitive service provider – Tootle, made their way to Pathao mobile app.

–      Targeting The Audience Through Ads

As they say that old habits die hard, text message promotions and traditional ways of advertising proved to be a major hit for this ride-sharing application in Bangladesh.

  • Apart from discounts, the text included information regarding the app updates, discount codes, traffic congestion on the roads, and much more.
  • Not to forget that Pathao has rendered sponsorship to various school and college events that helped its brand recognition strategy.

–      Taking the digital route

Pathao has taken the digital route that targets a better audience. The digital updates help both the customers and riders. They get discounts and bonuses respectively. Pathao’s ability to implement the commendable advantages of digital marketing is appreciable.

Reasons for Pathao’s Success in Bangladesh

Pathao’s success in Bangladesh can be attributed to the following mentioned reasons:

●     Innovative Expansion

The ride-sharing tool in Bangladesh decided to move over from using two-wheelers to including the 4-wheeler solution. It helped add variation to the services, followed by comfort and convenience on the way. Competitive apps like Tootle did not have this, so monopoly became a trend.

●     Employment Opportunities

With the increasing population and lifestyle changes, people are on the lookout for opting for part-time jobs. Pathao welcomes one and all for becoming a food delivery agent or a rider under its pool of services and hence, acts as an excellent way of generating employment.

●     Monetary Functioning

Also, Pathao’s presence in the market is expanding owing to its competitive yet affordable market rates that match its customers’ market cap of services.

Challenges

No win comes easily. The same is for Pathao over here. It faced some challenges like:

  • Need for a flexible database to ensure the proper functioning of its functional operations.
  • Inconvenience in developing the right IT approach to cater to the rising needs of an ever growing customer base.
  • It needs to rethink its business model’s functioning for large-scale and long-term evolution.

Hitting the Headlines

  • By the end of January 2021, trends suggest that Pathao had built a huge market in Bangladesh. The mobile app subscribers of the application had reached 171.854 million.
  • Pathao has the tag of introducing motorcycle services within one year of its launch. The motorcycle services were launched in November 2016. The diversity in Pathao’s services plays a significant role in helping it become one of the significant ride-sharing apps in Bangladesh.
  • Pathao has approximately 1 million downloads, and customers have various services to choose from. Also, the presence of 10 microservices adds to the flexible functioning of the business.

Key takeaway

In all, Pathao has evolved many folds owing to meeting the target audience’s demands in innovative ways and presenting a praiseworthy infrastructure that promises uptime to both the service givers and takers as a part of the ride-hailing industry.

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